Hi friends. Recently I saw some instructions online on how to make yogurt in the crock pot. I love using my crock pot, so this sounded like something I'd like to try. The only ingredients you need are milk and plain yogurt with active cultures. Last weekend I made my first attempt. Alas - it was a total failure! The yogurt did not thicken AT ALL! I even tried reheating it, but it curdled, so I drained off the whey and used the 'cottage cheese' in some lasagna.
Now I am not someone who would normally try again when my first attempt is an utter failure, but this just seemed like it should not be that difficult. I thought maybe that I did not get the temperature correct, so I forced myself to take another shot.
Yesterday, I started the batch and after the time given for the milk to heat, I put my candy thermometer in and could see that it was nowhere near the temperature (around 180 degrees) it was supposed to be, so I added anywhere from 1/2 to 1 hour at a time and kept testing the temperature. I'm not sure exactly how long I cooked it, but eventually it was within about 10 degrees, so I went to the next step, which was cooling it back down to around 110.
The next step was adding in the yogurt and then wrapping the crock pot up in a big bath towel and leaving it sit for 8 hours or overnight.
This morning when I removed the towel, I was excited to see SUCCESS! YAY! I drained off the whey and put my yogurt in some pint jars. I will most definitely do this again.
Some of the sites talked about cooking down the whey and making a kind of cheese. Since I had all the whey from my previous batch, plus a small amount from this one, I put them together and went for it.
I cooked it for hours (during which time someone in the house rather loudly complained about the smell) and finally, it had cooked down enough to carmelize and thicken. I let it cool a little and then I tasted it. Rather salty and almost a 'vinegary' flavor. Certainly not what I was expecting. I don't think I'll try this again. Next time I'll just toss the whey.
Thanks so much for stopping by.